Wednesday, May 24, 2006

NEEDIES like rain on a sunshine day

This might be old news for some, but till today I wasn´t aware that I need a Needie.
Needies are interactive plush dolls inspired by codependent, high-maintenance relationships.

Totally attention-starved, they compete with each other for human affection -- or, getting touch, as they like to say.

When you give Needies touch (by hugging and squeezing them), they will return your kindness with songs and shameless flattery.

But remember that Needies always know when other Needies are getting touch! If one Needie is getting touch while others are neglected, the unloved Needies will conspire to take its place.

Soon the unhugged Needies will start to complain.

"Is it my turn yet?" one might sullenly whine.

"Me! Me! Me!" another may shriek.

"Throw him," a particularly desperate Needie might even command. "THROW HIM!"

Each Needie, you see, has a microcontroller hidden inside his soft, stuffed belly that not only registers when he is touched but also broadcasts that information to the other dolls. As long as you spread your love evenly among the three Needies (named Brettie, Dannie and Mossie after their designers), they remain more or less content. But the minute one Needie perceives an imbalance of attention, he'll start to give you an earful.

"Dannie's getting touched!" whines Mossie. "Oh, filthy."

"Shut up, Mossie," Dannie snaps back.

Needies are created by Amos Bloomberg, Daniel Perlin, and Brett Schultz. They are all recent graduates of New York University's Interactive Telecommunications Program.

merci beaucoup Régine for pointing me to these charming critters.

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